How to insert a PDF into Visio

Forum Forums Visio Tools / Interface How to insert a PDF into Visio

This topic contains 6 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Bill 4 years ago.

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    Todd Hatch

    I can not seem to find how to insert a PDF file into Visio as a Plan Page. Help Plz.



    You can convert the PDF to DXF then import to Visio.



    If you have trouble converting the PDF to DXF, send me an email with your file to help you out.


    Dustin Boyle, CTS-D

    The best method I have found for importing PDFs is to open the PDF file,
    – then go to the edit menu and select preferences

    – under the general tab check the box that lets use specify the snapshot resolution, (200 pixels/inch works well anything higher and visio doesn’t like to paste it, on my machine at least, 125 pixels/inch for 42×36 plans)

    -once that box is checked exit out of preferences and go back to the edit menu and select the snapshot tool.

    -Then highlight the area you want to import and it will copy to your clipboard.(I find it’s best to only highlight the areas you actually want instead of the whole page, yes you can crop it in visio but it still takes up unnecessary space in the visio project file, also weird things start to happen in visio if the clipboard file gets to large like the undo button disappearing)

    -After the box comes up saying it was copied to clipboard press okay then paste it into visio.

    -sometimes the autobalance button in visio does wonders to the pasted image and sometimes it’s greyed out.. again weirdness..

    -scale drawing to appropriate size then add it to it’s own layer and lock it from changes.

    -Enjoy a nice plan that suffers from very little of the crappy visio image compression algorithm.

    -Hope this helps

    p.s. it also seems like you can zoom in much farther without getting the X’ed out image that can occur with regularly pasted/imported images



    Thanks Dustboy, that worked, easy.



    Everything in this topic is very helpful, thank you. I am able to take a snapshot, insert it into Visio, and scale the image to fit on my page. However, I come across the same problem where the image sometimes disappears. I can still select the “empty” image and move it around, but it will come and go as it pleases. I have found that it happens less when I remove the background title page. My ultimate goal would be to leave my title page in the drawing while inserting each floor of the home on their respective page. Has anyone experienced this glitch where the image comes and goes as it pleases? If so, what was your fix? -Thanks in advance.


    Dustin Boyle, CTS-D

    Glad you folks found my method helpful, it took me quite some time messing around to get it the best I could.

    As to why the images can disappear I think it is tied to RAM. When the program reaches the maximum amount of RAM in it’s processing I think it just can’t display the images anymore. Visio is definitely processing the images inside of it, my guess is to try and reduce the images file size, but invariably adding images increases the Visio project size larger than what the image actually is size wise so it doesn’t seem too effective which makes me wonder what is actually going on. For me increasing my RAM on my machine seemed to allow for larger files before the image would “x” out

    I don’t think Microsoft takes Visio as seriously as the rest of office as the same bugs keep resurfacing version after version. One weird bug I keep running into is under the Picture format tab, if you press the compress picture button a window appears showing the compression % Visio is using. It’s default is 95% but if you try yo set it at 100% and hit apply/ok then recheck the setting it has returned to 95%? So the only way to seemingly stop Visio compression is to uncheck the box, however Visio is still obviously doing something as the picture is still of less quality than if I paste the snapshot into photoshop.

    So in short, I think the way Visio handles pictures is causing it to render improperly and take up excess RAM which in turn causes weird glithes in the way it displays.

    But hey I could be wrong as I’m no developer, just an AV systems design enginner, these are just my observations with hours of testing so take it as you will.


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